Infinity War Theories or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Soul Stone
The new Infinity War trailer dropped last week and the internet lost its mind, as it tends to do when the biggest superhero movie of all time (in scale, at least) is teasing its audience with more details. This trailer was chock full of shocking, funny, and even chilling moments from the film, such as Thanos’ plan to wipe out half of the universe, or Doctor Strange being tortured by Ebony Maw, or Tony Stark being told his plan sucks by Star-Lord, or Thor having his head crushed. Any of those scenes would have been enough to round out a great trailer, but the one that seems to be sticking with people the most is that of Steve Rogers heroically struggling to push back the hand of Thanos. It’s inspiring, it’s exactly what you want in a hero, and it is so on point with Steve’s “I could do this all day” attitude that it’s chill-inducing...but it’s also baffling. Captain America is no Hulk in the strength department, for sure. He is typically described as “peak human” in the comics, which basically means he’s as strong as a human being could possibly be without really having to work for it. In the movies, the argument could be made that he’s a little bit stronger than that, considering his various feats, such as holding a helicopter in place, or downing a SHIELD quinjet on his own, but he’s still far from Hulk, Thor, or even Iron Man’s level of strength.
Thanos, on the other hand, routinely manhandles the strongest of the strong, wherever he goes, throughout the universe.
This common knowledge has led some fans to question just what is going on in this scene with Steve facing off against Thanos. Is Thanos toying with him, so amused that borderline-normal human being would attempt to hold him back? Has Steve’s strength been increased somehow? Is he wielding an Infinity Stone to even the odds? Or...is Steve, himself, the Soul Stone? If you’re skeptical of that last question, you’re not alone. It would be a big leap for one of the Infinity Stones to be a person, especially one of the main heroes of the MCU, but maybe not as big of a leap as you think. The Soul Stone is the only of the Infinity Stones to have not been revealed yet. Why? Most likely because its location is going to be a big surprise within the Infinity War movie, itself. After all, once Thanos secures the known Stones from their locations, the whereabouts of the Soul Stone is going to be the question of the day and, as far as the audience knows, nobody in the MCU is aware of where it is at this moment.
First off, let’s examine what exactly the Soul Stone is capable of. Since we have no information on it within the confines of the MCU, so far, we will have to use the knowledge of it from the comics. Generally, in the books, the Soul Stone can be used to attack, protect, gather information from, or collect souls in various ways. Nothing shocking there, as it is called “the Soul Stone”. The interesting part, is that it is sentient, meaning it thinks for itself and has its own identity, motivations, wants, and needs. Given that information, it’s not hard to believe that it could have been hidden, or hidden itself at some point, disguised as a person, be it alien or human. Is that to say that it took the place of somebody? Not necessarily. When dealing with cosmic forces, anything is possible, even the Soul Stone simply taking its place as the soul of a normal human being. This person wouldn’t even necessarily be aware of what they were. So, supposing that is the case, who are the top candidates?
Captain America/Steve Rogers
Obviously, Steve’s standoff with Thanos in the Infinity War trailer was the catalyst for this whole theory, so he’s at the top of the list. If he is, indeed, holding his own against Thanos, he wouldn’t be able to do that without a little help. Maybe he discovers what he is at some point and is able to harness the power against Thanos. Bottom line: Steve is, without a doubt, the most pure of soul of all of the Avengers, so he makes the most sense, personality-wise. The only thing that doesn’t quite add up is, if he had somehow become able to use the Soul Stone’s power, it’s not likely it would manifest in any physical way, such as him duking it out with Thanos.
Iron Man/Tony Stark
Tony is definitely far from being pure like Steve, but he’s come a long way since the first Iron Man movie. So, what makes him a likely candidate? Simply the fact that he is the lynchpin to the entire MCU. This entire universe of successful movies wouldn’t be happening without Robert Downey Jr./Tony Stark. Couple that with the fact that he is likely to die making some sort of heroic sacrifice within the next two Avengers movies, and his reveal as the Soul Stone makes a lot of sense.
The odds of him being the Soul Stone are slim to none, but Odin was a crafty guy who didn’t mind lying to people, so hiding the Stone as his son would add up. Similarly, Thor is also in danger of dying in the next two films and he has recently discovered a power within himself that he never knew existed, so it could be argued that this newfound power is just him getting in tune with his inner Soul Stone.
This one is also a longshot, but it’s been a popular fan theory for a while, so we’ll discuss it. Simply put, Heimdall claims to be able to see “all of the souls of the nine realms”, plus he has orange eyes, which is the same color as the Soul Stone. Fans were sure that it was going to be revealed that he had possession of the Stone in Thor: Ragnarok, but no such revelation came to be. That doesn’t mean that he’s not somehow connected to the Soul Stone, though. The powers-that-be in the MCU are known for playing the long game, so Heimdall could still come into play in a big way in Infinity War.
No, he hasn’t technically appeared yet in the MCU, but we did see his cocoon at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, so anything is possible. Why is he a candidate? Mostly because he is the most famous wielder of the Soul Stone in the comics. He was in possession of the Stone for years in the books and he forged a powerful bond with it. Plus, it’s kind of hard to imagine an Infinity War movie without him popping up in some way, shape, or form. Unfortunately, there has been no notice of casting of this character yet and both Avengers films have already wrapped shooting, so if he’s showing up, it’s a very well-kept secret.
At the end of the day, this is all just speculation based on a handful of scenes from a trailer and the wild imaginations of fans, but there does seem to be a decent possibility that the story could be going in this direction, if only because it would be a lot more interesting than Thanos arriving on Earth, lifting up a heavy rock, and saying, “oh, there’s that Soul Stone I was looking for.” Be sure to let us know your own theories or if we left any obvious candidates off our list in the comments section.